Harvested organic cotton at a bioRe facility in Kasrawad, India. India is the single largest producer of the world’s organic cotton, responsible for half of the supply. Saumya Khandelwal for The New York Times
When I see a headline like That Organic Cotton T-Shirt May Not Be as Organic as You Think my first reaction is a reflexive wince.
I will read the article for sure, as I did in this case, but even before reading it I feel defensive.
I am deeply committed to organic certification and seven years living in India makes this subheading into a red flag in terms of my sharing it with others:
The organic cotton movement in India appears to be booming, but much of this growth is fake, say those who source, process and grow the cotton.
Not because it is hard to believe. Exactly the opposite. I had work experiences that this story echoed in a different context. But when I share articles I value each day, usually on an environmental topic, a large percentage of those who click and read are from India. That is likely because we started this platform 10+ years ago while based in India. I do not enjoy, even if I am confident of its veracity, sharing news that I know will make those visitors, not to mention my many friends in India, uncomfortable.
Farmers set up their load of cotton at the Khargone mandi, a large auction market. Saumya Khandelwal for The New York Times
But I got over it. Each of the journalists who authored this story put something on the line to get these important facts about two topics I care about. So, please read on and visit the source so the authors and photographer are properly credited for their excellent work:
Michael Kors retails its organic cotton and recycled polyester women’s zip-up hoodies for $25 more than its conventional cotton hoodies. Urban Outfitters sells organic sweatpants that are priced $46 more than an equivalent pair of conventional cotton sweatpants. And Tommy Hilfiger’s men’s organic cotton slim-fit T-shirt is $3 more than its conventional counterpart. Continue reading